Minolta X-700: My Favorite 35mm SLR

14

The Minolta X-700 is a compact SLR, with all the features you need and a few extra ones. Probably my favourite SLR of all time and nearly my favourite camera of all time. I will try to explain why in this review.

I first stumbled across the Minolta X-700 in June of last year (2011). I was on a school trip going to World War I graves, trenches, and memorials in Belgium and France. I had with me my DSLR and my Halina Paulette. My then girlfriend had with her a black and interesting-looking SLR. I asked her if I could take a few shots with it, as soon as I told it I knew I had to get one, the grip is fantastic and the camera’s layout is simple and very user friendly.

It has P mode which is basically automatic mode, A (aperture priority), and then fully manual mode, so the camera allows you to have as much or as little control as you want.

After I got the results from my Halina Paulette back from the lab, I was hugely disappointed most of the images did not come out. I compared them to my girlfriend’s results with her X-700, and was blown away.

I started to search for one for myself but couldnt find one at a fair price.

Around 7 months later, I finally found one £50 with 3 lenses, the 50mm 1.7, 28mm 2.8 and a 3rd party zoom. I was so excited I didn’t talk about anything else for the 3 days it took to arrive, and to me and my girlfriends relief the camera arrived. I ripped open the parcel and inside found my beloved X-700. Upon closer inspection, I was hugely disappointed; the 3 lenses each had severe lens fungus. I started to search for more lenses, but found another x-700 body with 3 lenses for £30. I snapped it up, and luckily these lenses didn’t have fungus, so I now had 2 bodies and 6 lenses. I sold the body and the 3 fungus-filled lenses, and managed to get £60. I was very happy with my purchase but needed a standard 50mm lens. I started searchig on eBay, I then found a broken Minolta XE and I know they came with the highly regarded Minolta 50mm 1.4 lens. So I contacted the seller and I managed to get the lens for £6! I then sold my 3 remaining lenses for £25, so I had, in effect, got a Minolta X-700 and Minolta 50mm 1.4 lens for £1.

Here is an image of my beloved camera.

Now, down to the review. As usual, when I get a camera, I check the battery, to see if its working. I go out and shoot regardless of the weather.

I loaded my X-700 with Lucky SHD 100 and set off on a walk with my girlfriend. I live in Hellifield, a village in North West England, so my main subjects are animals, flowers, landscapes, or friends I am with.

The camera its self handles perfectly. It’s made of plastic on a metal chassis so it’s just the right weight and combined with the 50mm 1.4 the camera is a pleasure to use, I normally shoot in aperture priority. We walked up a hill to a ram shackled farm, where we found some goats and 2 very friendly cats; we watched them for around 15 minutes, Here are some of the results. I developed the film in cafenol and scanned with Epson Perfection 4870.

We continued up the hill to find some highland cattle, here is a shot of one of them.

This was in January so it was rather cold, but I really like shooting in winter.

Later on in the day we went on a walk to a near by forest, which is like a wonderland with a lake in the middle, here are some shots from there.

The X-700 has a fantastic metering system and works well in any light especially when used with a bright lens like the 50 1.4.

Recently, I picked up a small job lot of expired film off eBay. One of the films was Ilford SFX, a black and white film with infared capabilities. I also picked up a roll of Kodak HIE but I’m waiting for summer to shoot that marvelous film. I purchased a r72 filter to exploit the infared of the Ilford SFX, and I took it with me on a visit to my girlfriend’s house. We went on a walk to a lovely wooded area. I shot at f16 in bulb and used the camera metering but added another 5 stops to compensate for the filter. Every single shoot came out. Here are some of my favorites.


The above shots were developed in Rodinal.

To conclude my review, the Minolta X-700 is my favorite camera and has been since I set my hands on one. I can highly recommend one to anybody, as they are quite cheap and have a fantastic array of accessories and lenses. They accept both MD and MC mount lenses. I try to use mine as much as possible, and it fits in a large coat pocket just about but I usually use a strap. If you are new to SLR photography then its a great choice as it has a auto mode. Also, if you’re looking for something that gives you more control again it is great.

Thank you for taking time to read my review, I hope you found it useful. It’s my first review and I hope to write more in the future, so please feel free to comment. Thanks!

written by brandkow93 on 2012-03-30 in #reviews

14 Comments

  1. kiri-girl
    kiri-girl ·

    Love! I got a Minolta Xd7 and it's my first and one of my favorite slrs to use :)

  2. laurasulilly
    laurasulilly ·

    Yay, I love my Minolta x-700 as well!

  3. rbruce63
    rbruce63 ·

    Being a Minolta Maxxum 600si user I find your pictures outstanding!

  4. rbruce63
    rbruce63 ·

    Thanks for the pointers on IR film I am looking forward to receive mine too!

  5. brandkow93
    brandkow93 ·

    Thank you very much :)
    you are very welcome, if you have got actual IR film not black and white with heighten red sensitivety and your shooting it in a more modern slr then check if the camera uses Infared to cheeck the film spacing, if it does then it will ruin your film. Have fun shooting it, its a much different experience but a great one, and i cant wait to see your results.

  6. vandal
    vandal ·

    LOVE LOVE LOVE MY X700

  7. pkirsche
    pkirsche ·

    Nice pictures! Amazing camera you've got, congratulations! I'll try to purchase one soon, I still don't have a SLR.

  8. brandkow93
    brandkow93 ·

    @pkirsche thanks alot :) it really is lovely and the minolta 50 1.4 lens is amazing. Cool i hope you get one, if you can not find a x-700 then look out for other Minolta X series cameras (XG series, XE series, XD series, or the sibling of this camera X-300 and X-500, every photographer has to have a SLR lol.

  9. katecd
    katecd ·

    Minolta X-700 is also my favourite camera, I'm glad I accidentally introduced you to it :)

  10. brandkow93
    brandkow93 ·

    hehehe i know it is, and thank you for accidentily introducing it to me

  11. katecd
    katecd ·

    It's quite alright hehee

  12. pkirsche
    pkirsche ·

    @brandkow93 You're right, I really need one... =/ I'm afraid these Minolta cameras are hard to find here in Brazil, for they were never made here... At least I still couldn't find them.

  13. thelonelycyclist
    thelonelycyclist ·

    What a lovely story I have have had 3 of these cameras since 1986 and still have 2 together with 8 lenses and really love it,and have no desire to go digital.

  14. rbruce63
    rbruce63 ·

    Hi, @brandkow93 I managed to ruin a perfect roll of EIR, despite exposing in a Yashica Electro 35 GSN, however, the pictures are very strange indeed despite the lab damaging the film during processing. Do you still have the X-700? Do you own other lenses?

More Interesting Articles

  • Lomopedia: Minolta X-700

    written by plasticpopsicle on 2014-04-10 in #reviews
    Lomopedia: Minolta X-700

    Introduced in 1981, the Minolta x-700 is considered as the most popular and top of the line model among Minolta's manual focus body cameras. Find out more about this impressive 35mm SLR camera in this installment of Lomopedia!

  • Lomopedia: Contax Aria

    written by cheeo on 2014-10-22 in #reviews
    Lomopedia: Contax Aria

    A lightweight and compact contender in the 35mm SLR division, the Contax Aria boasts a well-designed feature set and a crisp Zeiss lens that will be surely loved by collectors and film photography enthusiasts.

  • 36 Reasons to shoot stunning squares with the LC-A 120

    written by camilla_illa on 2015-01-23 in #world #news
    36 Reasons to shoot stunning squares with the LC-A 120

    Why shoot square? ...Just take a second to look at these outstanding square photographs using the LC-A 120 and you will find out why! Selfies, silhouettes, walkways and winter landscapes are just a few of the themes featured in this spectacular photographic shortlist.

    1
  • Shop News

    Show Off your Pics with Style!

    Show Off your Pics with Style!

    Build vivid hanging LomoCurtains, robust free-standing LomoCastles, and dazzling mounted LomoMosaics! Just click them together with the Lomography Photoclips!

  • Lomography Belair X 6-12: A Camera That Can Do Almost Everything (Part 2)

    written by simonesavo on 2014-08-05 in #reviews
    Lomography Belair X 6-12: A Camera That Can Do Almost Everything (Part 2)

    The Lomography Belair X 6-12 is more than just a medium format camera. It is lightweight, compact, and capable of shooting photos in three different sizes: 6x12, 6x9, and 6x6. Equipped with a high quality interchangeable lens system and and automatic exposure, it can give you beautiful shots in every roll. It can also take three different film formats: 120mm, 35mm, and instant. Read on to find out all about this fantastic camera.

  • Lomography Belair X 6-12: A Camera That Can Do Almost Everything Part 1

    written by simonesavo on 2014-07-24 in #reviews
    Lomography Belair X 6-12: A Camera That Can Do Almost Everything Part 1

    The Lomography Belair X 6-12 is more than just a medium format camera. It is lightweight, compact and is capable of shooting photos in 3 different sizes: 6x12, 6x9 and 6x6. Equipped with high-quality interchangeable lenses and automatic exposure, it can give you beautiful shots with every roll. It can also take 3 different film formats: 120 film, 35mm and instant film. Read on to find out all about this fantastic camera.

  • December 22nd Advent Offer: Shop Today & Save 10%! (Online Code: LASTCHANCE10)

    written by jacobs on 2014-12-22 in #news
    December 22nd Advent Offer: Shop Today & Save 10%! (Online Code: LASTCHANCE10)

    With the holidays just right around the corner, it's time to treat yourself to something nice! By this time, you're probably finished with all of your holiday shopping. Why not grab something warm to drink and head on over to the Online Shop? You can save a bundle with today's Advent deal of the day!

  • Shop News

    Give your space a facelift with your own analogue print

    Give your space a facelift with your own analogue print

    Really want to bring your film photos to life? We’re now offering totally analogue fine art prints in a host of large sizes and formats! Carefully enlarged from your negatives onto premium photographic paper by lab professionals, each picture is a unique piece of craftsmanship.

  • Valentine's Day Deals Extended!

    written by jacobs on 2015-02-10 in #gear #news
    Valentine's Day Deals Extended!

    Are you still looking for that perfect treat for your loved one this Valentine's Day? Then you've come to the right place, my friend — we've extended our Valentine's deals until the end of the week! Which means you have extra time to get lucky in all things love and Lomography. Quit dodging Cupid's arrows and get in on these sweet deals right now!

  • Elitechrome 400 EL: Absolutely Retro

    written by wil6ka on 2014-03-14 in #reviews
    Elitechrome 400 EL: Absolutely Retro

    The entire Kodak Elitechrome series belong to my favorite films. From the EB, to the EBX, ED, and EL; they all have great features once you know how to use them well. The EL with its 400 ISO hardly gets any attention, which is also because of the fact that it is more uncommon. But that is about to change with this. Here's some e-love.

    4
  • An Afternoon in Tagaytay Highlands

    written by stitch on 2014-07-28 in #world #locations
    An Afternoon in Tagaytay Highlands

    I have good memories of Tagaytay Highlands. There had been times when some of my friends and I would spend the weekend there, playing all sorts of sports and having our bodies healed in the warm and lapping jacuzzi pool. But those were distant memories. I was able to go back to this place, but only for an afternoon, and tried to remember the good old days.

  • Shop News

    (Re)discover Photography with the Stenoflex Mini Labo

    (Re)discover Photography with the Stenoflex Mini Labo

    Stenoflex lets you reproduce the single steps of black and white photography, from taking photos to printing. It is a simple box pierced with a tiny pinhole to allow light to enter. Put a sheet of photosensitive paper (included) inside the darkroom and expose it to your subject.

  • Testing the ONDU Pinhole Camera Around Germany

    written by antoniocastello on 2015-03-01 in #world #reviews
    Testing the ONDU Pinhole Camera Around Germany

    A few months ago, Lomography made available a whole range of pinhole cameras made out of premium wood. Interested on knowing how good they are, I brought the medium format one on my last trip to Germany.

  • Ponzi is our LomoHome of the Day!

    written by icequeenubia on 2015-03-01 in #world #news
    Ponzi is our LomoHome of the Day!

    From everyone here in Lomography, congratulations to ponzi for winning Home of the Day!

    1
  • Photo of the Day by freerangechicken

    written by Eunice Abique on 2015-03-01 in #world #news
    Photo of the Day by freerangechicken

    Do you think you can beat this kid at doing handstand?